Apple and Gooseberry Pie

You might be asking yourself just what in the Sam Hell a gooseberry is. I first had these tart little beauties at a tiny English Tea room in San Antonio, which is probably the oddest place in the world to have them. They really only grow in cold climates like England and the Northeastern Seaboard of the U.S.

In the tea room, my pal Liz and I had gooseberry crumble. The gorgeous tart berries hidden under crispy crumble and topped with fresh cream were a divine revelation. I’ve thought about that dessert often since then, but until a few weeks ago, had never found a fresh gooseberry for sale. An early morning trip to our town’s farmer’s market brought excitement and joy. I just knew that the gooseberries would pair perfectly with the Honey Crisp apples I’d picked up at the stall before.

Apple pie is probably James’s top dessert, though it fights for that position with Carrot Cake. He was pretty happy to come home from work and see this baby chilling on the counter top.

Gooseberries are in the Tomatillo family, so they have a similar papery husk that comes right off. In England, Gooseberries are green, but here in the U.S., they tend more towards an orange hue.

As they’re mixed into the apple pie filling and cooked down, they add a perfect tartness you might also get with lemon juice. They pop when you bite into them, much like a cherry or tomato, but there’s a sweet-sour note that will surprise and delight.

So go on, have a slice. I may or may not have had one for breakfast the day I took these photos.

Note: I have learned that this pie is in fact made with Cape Gooseberries, which are a different species to the Gooseberries grown in England. However, their flavor profiles are almost identical, and you can use them interchangeably.

Come join Love the Pie with TidyMom sponsored by Cherokee USA, Le Creuset, Wilton, Bags by Bloom and Harvard Common Press.


  1. says

    gooseberries are so hard to come by but boy, when you’re lucky enough to snag??? heaven!!! homemade gooseberry pie w/good vanilla ice cream is a dream come true . . . and jam spread on toast for breakfast in the morning? girl, i’ve died and gone to heaven!!

  2. Kristen says

    I can’t lie: I thought a Gooseberrry was something from Willy Wonky’s flavored wallpaper. The things you learn (and now drool over) every day.

  3. says

    I love, love, love groundcherries (aka cape gooseberries). I always wait patiently..or not so patiently for them to appear at the market. This pie looks absolutely mouthwatering, Amber. Your husband is one lucky man. xoxo

  4. says

    Now how did you know what I was asking myself? Actually I’ve heard of them but never in all of my many years have I ever seen them available at any market ever; at least now I know what to look for!

    Your crust is beautiful Amber. Gorgeous even.

  5. says

    Is this related by any chance to shnozberries?! Tee he hee! Still loling that you found gooseberries in SA! Now im curious! They do look like bitty tomatillos! Very interesting post and gorgeous pie!

  6. Hannah says

    My grandpa is obsessed with gooseberries (mostly in pies, because yum)! We live in Dallas, though, so he orders cases (literally) of cans of gooseberries from up north. Then my sweet aunt makes him a batch of pies to freeze and ration out until the next time. You know he loves you if he offers you a piece of his treasure! haha

  7. says

    I love the sound of this pie! I saw gooseberries at the you-pick farm this year but didn’t get any – I’ll have to put them on my list for next year!!

  8. Ellie says

    That looks like a delicious recipe! I grow both Gooseberries and Cape Gooseberries, so I’ll have to try this pie with both fruits. Thank you for posting this!

  9. Polina says

    Actually you are not correct. What you are describing is called Ground tomatoes, or groundcherries (they fall to the ground when get ripe) ,they are small and have husks around them like tomatillo and are sweet.Gooseberries are green and have what looks like veins on the surface , they are very tart, if they remain on the shrub long enough they turn dark red. They are grown mostly in Europe and I should know as I gew up there. You can find gooseberry preserves on the shelves of supermarkets where you can see the picture of this fruit.I actually grow them here in NJ and will make a gooseberry preserve as well as tarts.

    • says


      If you see my update at the bottom of the post, these are referred to as Cape Gooseberries, which are a different species than the European gooseberries. I am fully aware there is a difference, however even the farmer I bought them from called them gooseberries. So while I respect that you grew up in Europe (so did my husband) and there’s a completely different plant and fruit there with the same name, please note that in the US these are most definitely *also* known as gooseberries.

      I thank you for stopping by.

  10. Nancy says

    Your recipe looks great! But to correct &/or enhance your information, we live in the southwest corner of Ohio & have been growing gooseberries successfully for a long time. And the variety we grow, which we obtained from an elderly friend who had been growing them foerever, is green, ripening to purple.

    • says

      Nancy, thanks for your comment. It appears there’s a great gooseberry debate. In England, they’re most certainly never purple. I think there must be multiple types that grow in specific areas, and we all just call them gooseberries, instead of being more specific. Thanks for letting my readers know though. So long as they’re tart, they’ll be great in this recipe :)

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